Satyricon & Munch - exhibition - Wishevoke

Satyricon & Munch – exhibition

A seemingly unexpected artistic approach. Maybe not so much if you leave the shell behind and focus on the essence of the art. Satyricon and Munch. On the one hand, one of the longest-lasting black metal bands. On the other hand, Munch, a special personality who repeatedly experienced the artistic search as the ultimate embodiment of expression in his visual works. An exhibition that combines these two worlds into a single experience based on both emotions and the senses.

Satyricon & Munch

As part of the international visitor reception program at the Oya Festival in Oslo, we had the honor of being invited to a special tour of the exhibition. Housed in the brand new Munch Museum right by the sea, one of the jewels of the city, which can also be seen in the pride of the Norwegians who welcomed us to this place. When we arrived at the exhibition floor, we were met by Trine Otte Bak Nielsen, exhibition curator, and Sigurd Wongraven (Satyr), who wanted to give us an introduction to the content and purpose of this pain.

Satyricon & Munch

“We didn’t just want to write music for an exhibition and play it in the background”said Sigurd. Instead, as he described to us, they sought to explore the emotional impact of the works but also draw inspiration from Munch’s life and approach. Unadulterated, no leaks and must.

Satyricon & Munch

I didn’t know how to approach this project, but there was no one who could help me, no one who had done it before

Satyricon & Munch

Before entering the exhibition space, we were warned that it would take a few minutes for our eyesight to adjust to the near-total darkness. The unique lighting is precisely tailored to the exhibits. In fact, the combination of darkness and the increasingly loud eerie melodies creates a strange feeling as you walk through the small corridor. Like a blackout that refocuses perception.

Satyricon & Munch

A large hall welcomes us, the exhibits are lined up one after the other and demand our full attention. Those who were most “impressed” by Munch’s work pounced on his most popular works like “Anxiety.” The mix of lithographs, oil paintings and wood carvings gives the eye different stimuli.

Satyricon & Munch

As Sigurd told us, the music is designed to work like a magnifying glass, alternating different emotions and intensities. Each work can evoke different reactions depending on the moment one is in front of it, with the sound influencing the way one experiences the experience. The common denominator between sound and image in this exhibition? The melancholy. Emotions that can become overwhelming are heightened by the audiovisual experience.

Satyricon & Munch

During the approximately one-hour duration of the musical part, the experience can take on different forms. At the opposite end of the room, an invisible sofa allows you to take in all the works but also observe visitors’ reactions to the experience. Even to think about. Because the exhibition is above all a personal challenge. Death, unpleasant feelings, but also love and beauty, all together weave a complex web that the visitor seeks to unravel while exploring elements of himself.

Satyricon & Munch

As we left the venue and waited for most people to leave, we found the opportunity to chat with Sigurd. He was visibly proud of the exhibition and told us how the project went from conception to implementation. His admiration for Munch’s work as well as his personality served as inspiration for composing the music.

Satyricon & Munch

He was an unconventional character who was dedicated to his work. Therefore, he decided to isolate himself when his fame became an obstacle to his creation

Satyricon & Munch

But he also attached great importance to the personal experience that arises when each individual’s personal emotional state comes into play. “You can come on a day when you’re not feeling well and feel completely different things in the room.”

Satyricon & Munch

When asked whether this exhibition could be transferred to other countries in the future, his eyes lit up. “Please inform the museum management”he told us, laughing. “I believe that we have created something special that deserves to be experienced by more people.” On the other hand, it is a magnet for the museum at the moment, so I haven’t seen any interest in leaving it. Tell everyone you can.”

Satyricon & Munch

All in all, a puzzling experience that will stay with you for a long time. Culture shock inevitably plays a role, seeing how much emphasis is placed on the innovation of art, but also on the exploration of all its aspects, bringing previously marginalized elements into the frame. Something that unfortunately looks like a midsummer night’s dream for our country, but continues to inspire us.

Satyricon & Munch

Photos: Mariza Kapsampeli

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